Suddenly Wolf(10)

By: Abby Blake

Louise laughed, but Andrea didn’t miss the relief in her friend’s voice. It was a small town. The sheriff and his deputy spent most of their days dealing with traffic accidents on the nearby highway. An exciting night would involve having two drunks in the drunk tank instead of just the usual one.

“Jed’ll be relieved,” Louise said, glancing around the small store. “Of course, you’re more than welcome to press charges. Technically what they did is still considered attempted robbery.”

“No,” Andrea answered quickly—maybe a little too quickly judging by Louise’s searching look. “I mean, I don’t want to press charges. It was just a drunken prank, but maybe you could use it to get them all into an AA program.”

“Not bad,” Louise said with a conspiratorial grin. “By the time I’m finished with them, they’ll be too frightened not to sign up. I swear if I have to spend one more shift listening to Jed’s drunken snoring, I might just go back to my old job at the grocery store.”

Andrea grinned with her this time. They both knew Louise was far happier as a sheriff’s deputy than she ever was as the manager of the local grocery store. Although, her life would have been simpler if the current sheriff wasn’t a walking dick.

Louise closed her notebook and turned to leave. “We still on for lunch this Friday?”

“Sure,” Andrea answered, determined to live her life normally no matter what was going on in her head.

Just as Louise was about to step through the door, she turned back. “Oh, by the way, I’ve had a couple of reliable reports about a wolf hanging around the area. Give us a holler if you see it. I’d rather Cal Sanders get to it with his tranquilizer gun before some of the yahoos start shooting in the middle of town.”

“Will do,” Andrea answered on a wobbly voice. Wolf sightings? Could that have been one of the Cloveck brothers in furry form? No, because the Cloveck brothers weren’t real. She’d made them up. Again Louise gave Andrea a concerned look, but thankfully she waved good-bye and stepped out the door.

This was turning out to be one hell of a week.

Chapter Three

By closing time Andrea almost had herself convinced that last night had just been a strange, protracted dream. There was no such thing as werewolves. Therefore they couldn’t have saved her life, which meant Jed hadn’t accidentally shot her. Going by that logic, she felt certain that the Cloveck brothers were simply part of her libido reminding her that it had been a very long time.

Perhaps it was time to pull BOB back into service.

She glanced at her watch and wondered if she had enough time to duck down the road and grab some new batteries. Although, come to think of it, the last time she’d used her vibrator she’d made a mental note to buy a new one, so maybe that wasn’t such a good thought.

Abandoning the idea of a date with the battery operated boyfriend, Andrea headed to the door, flipped the sign from open to closed, and turned the key in the deadlock. She was walking away when a strange sense of déjà vu filled her. She looked over her shoulder, feeling certain that the Cloveck brothers were somehow behind her, maybe even in the room with her. Her vision wavered as the feeling of being watched permeated every thought.

“Where are you?” she whispered.

But of course nobody answered. She was alone, just like she was this time every night. Andrea took a couple of deep breaths and tried to brush the irritating notion aside. She finally managed to convince herself everything was okay when a loud banging sound came from the front door. She practically leapt from her skin, but sweat trickled down her spine when she recognized the two men peering through the window.

No. Fucking. Way.

“Open up, Andrea,” Daegan said as soon as he spotted her in the dark area of the shop. “We can see you, beautiful, so there’s no use hiding like a frightened maiden.”

Fabulous. The damn man knew exactly what buttons to push to make her do precisely what he wanted. Maiden? Sheesh. She marched to the door, unlocked the deadbolt, and opened it a crack. “I’m closed. What do you want?”

“You,” Daegan said casually as he pushed the door open and walked in as if he owned the place.

“Yeah, well you can’t have me, so go away.” But she was still shaking in reaction. Their arrival had blown her denial fantasy to smithereens, and she was both happy and angry about it. Isaac wrapped his arms around her, and she gratefully snuggled into his warmth. She had no idea why she was allowing him to hold her, but she did it just the same.

Daegan must have realized something was wrong because he stepped closer and ran a finger down her face exactly as he’d done the night before. “Are you okay, beautiful?”

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